Gaggia Classic Pro Vs Rancilio Silvia (The Complete Rundown)

In a rush? The Rancilio Silvia is your best bet for making the perfect cup of espresso at home.

Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to recreate your go-to coffee shop drink at home? All you need for your barista dreams to come true is the best espresso machine.

This Gaggia Classic Pro vs Rancilio Silvia guide talks about each coffee machine’s stand-out features, pros, and cons.

Let’s dig in!

Gaggia Classic Pro Vs Rancilio Silvia: Comparison Chart

Gaggia RI9380/46 Classic Pro Espresso Machine, Solid, Brushed Stainless Steel
Rancilio Silvia Espresso Machine with Iron Frame and Stainless Steel Side Panels
Product
Product
Gaggia RI9380/46 Classic Pro Espresso Machine, Solid, Brushed Stainless Steel
Rancilio Silvia Espresso Machine with Iron Frame and Stainless Steel Side Panels
Colors Available
Colors Available
Industrial gray, polar white, classic blue, thunder black, cherry red
Inox
Dimensions 
Dimensions 
9.5 x 8 x 14.5 inches
9.2 x 11.4 x 13.3 inches
Weight
Weight
20 pounds
30 pounds
Water Tank Capacity
Water Tank Capacity
72 oz
67 oz
Watts
Watts
1370 Watts
1110 Watts
Temperature and Heating Control
Temperature and Heating Control
Efficient heating and temperature control
No exact temperature control
Filter Baskets
Filter Baskets
Pressurized and commercial-grade filter baskets
Commercial-grade filter baskets
Ease of Use
Ease of Use
Three front switches and a side knob for intuitive operation
Intuitive front-panel operation
Steam Wand
Steam Wand
Rotating steam-wand
Manual steam-wand

Gaggia Classic Pro Overview

Gaggia is a small Italian appliance company founded back in 1947. It specializes in creating durable yet compact espresso and coffee makers.

But of course, no coffee brand gets famous the day it’s founded. Gaggia became famous when it started focusing on espresso machines with crema, and one of these machines is Gaggia Classic Pro. 

Gaggia Classic Pro is an upgrade from its predecessor model, Gaggia Classic. It became known as an entry-level semi automatic espresso machine (translation: a machine for dummies). 

The machine has a number of standout features, including a rapid heating boiler and a commercial-style steam wand. Those features make it fast at heating up your milk.

When you purchase a Gaggia Classic Pro, you get a two-way pin, single and double shot filter baskets, and a pressurized double shot filter basket. That’s all in addition to the machine itself!

One thing to note, however, is that this isn’t the best at frothing milk. The foam tends to come out large and bubbly rather than smooth and creamy. 

As a result, it’s probably not the ideal machine for cappuccinos and lattes. But, it can make a mean espresso!

Pros

  • Has a large water reservoir capacity, so you can make lots of coffee at once
  • A budget-friendly yet premium quality espresso machine, so you get a good bang for your buck
  • Durable machine body made of stainless steel, so it lasts a while
  • It’s easy to use, so it’s perfect for beginners

Cons

  • Small boiler capacity, so you can’t heat a lot of water at once
  • Milk frother is not the best, so it’s better for heating milk than frothing
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Rancilio Silva Overview

Rancilio is a famous Italian coffee machine company founded in 1927 by Roberto Rancilio.

Even though it was founded almost 100 years ago, it wasn’t until 1960 that it arrived in North America.

The brand’s original machine was the Rancio La Regina, but today, their most popular is the Rancilio Silvia.

Rancilio Silvia is a high-efficiency home espresso machine with a number of standout features. A couple of my favorite things about the Silvia include its power-saving mode and its large steam capacity. 

Now you can make great lattes while saving the environment. Talk about a win-win!

In terms of the downsides, this machine doesn’t have water level indicators on the reservoir. That means it’s more or less a guessing game as to when to refill the machine. 

The other issue is that the drip capacity is pretty low. So, you’ll be emptying your drip tray on a regular basis.

Pros 

  • Boiler has a large capacity, so you can make a lot of coffee at once
  • Flexible steam wand, so it’s easy to steam milk for your drinks
  • Compact design, so it fits into smaller kitchens

Cons

  • Small drip capacity, so you’ll have to empty the tray frequently 
  • No water level indicator, so it’s tough to know when to refill the reservoir
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Gaggia Classic Pro vs Rancilio Silvia: The Rundown

Gaggia Classic Pro and Rancilio Silvia are both high-end commercial espresso machines. And, both come with standout features.

To help you choose which fits you best, let’s challenge these espresso machines in a head-to-head battle.

Design and Build Quality

Both Gaggia Classic Pro and Rancilio Silvia offer robust machine body designs. 

The Gaggia Classic Pro features a sturdy build quality with a sleeker design compared to its predecessor. Despite its light price, the machine’s body is of stainless steel. 

Gaggia’s drip tray will also steal your attention. Its material is high-end and dense plastic, and it fits snugly in the espresso machine. The drip tray can blend in with the Gaggia Classic Pro’s overall look.

The Gaggia Classic Pro also comes with switches on its external body, mostly made of plastic. While they work well, they don’t feel snugly fitted when you click them.

On the other hand, Rancilio Silvia combines functionality and quality with its design. With a boxy housing of stainless steel, its material is stain-resistant and durable too. 

Rancilio Silvia’s professional-grade internal parts are made primarily of metal. Because of this machine’s simple design, it’s easy to repair and replace its internal parts when they get worn out.

The only disadvantage of metal internal parts is they’re prone to rust. But with proper maintenance, it’s avoidable! 

The Rancilio Silvia also has plastic buttons, but each control looks elegant and expensive. Its steam wand’s dial turns well. 

THE WINNER
The Rancilio Silvia wins this round thanks to its sleek design and easy maintenance.

Boiler

rancilio silvia espresso machine

These espresso machines have different boilers. 

Gaggia Classic Pro’s single boiler is made of aluminum, making it corrosion-resistant. It weighs 3.5 ounces with a maximum power of 1370 watts.

The boiler has combined low volume and high wattage, so it can bounce back in no time to make another brew after the first pull of the espresso shot.

On the other hand, Rancilio Silvia’s single boiler weighs 12 ounces with 952 watts as its total wattage. It’s made of brass and stainless steel, which makes it corrosion-resistant and great at retaining heat. 

On top of that, it features powerful steaming, which is great for making espresso drinks back-to-back. If you like powering through the workday with multiple lattes, this machine’s boiler is definitely a bonus. 

THE WINNER
Rancilio Silvia wins thanks to its heat-retaining boiler and high-capacity steam system.

Heating and Temperature Control

The Gaggia Classic Pro offers the most convenient heating. Since its boiler has a small capacity, it will only take 65 seconds for your brew to be ready after turning the machine on. 

It’s completely different from the Rancilio Silvia. And to master how it heats up and controls temperature, you need to show a little patience. Because everything is manual, you need some experimentation before getting it right. 

The Rancilio Silvia cannot offer precision with temperature control. This is primarily during milk steaming and coffee brewing. 

You must know that the temperature varies from 185 to 211 degrees Fahrenheit. And there will also be incidents when it falls outside the 195 to 204 degrees range.

But here’s the thing: you can purchase a separate PID controller for an extra cost. 

The PID controller will improve Silvia’s heat regulation. It also helps raise the boiler temperature with optimal precision and maintain the right temperature. 

THE WINNER
With efficient temperature control and fast heating time, it’s evident that Gaggia Classic Pro wins this round. 

ESE Pod Brewing

ESE pods are easy-serving espresso pods, containing seven grams of coffee. They also come with paper pockets that are 44 millimeters in diameter. You can use them when you don’t have a grinder for your coffee beans. 

Espresso machines with portafilter accessories and adapters work best for the ESE coffee pod. 

Your best option, in that sense, is Gaggia Classic Pro. This espresso machine’s portafilter has a single-shot pressurized basket. And this accessory calls for efficient ESE pod brewing.

When it comes to Silvia, you need to customize the machine to allow it to brew ESE pods. This espresso machine doesn’t have a portafilter basket, so you should purchase separate adapter kits.

These adapter kits offer Silvia compatibility and allow quick and affordable installation. 

THE WINNER
The Gaggia Classic Pro is the clear winner thanks to its pressurized basket, which makes for efficient ESE brewing.

Steam Wand

rancilio silvia espresso machine steam wand

You can depend on both machines’ steam wands. But each has unique characteristics for efficient milk frothing. 

Gaggia Classic Pro has a commercial-grade rotating steam wand. This wand can allow the heating of milk until it reaches a toasty temperature, helping create thick and froth foam.

Because of the rotating wand design, the Classic Pro offers more control during the steaming process. So, expect to manipulate your milk frothing for as much as you desire. 

In contrast, Rancilio Silvia’s steam wand is everything you need to create beautiful latte art. It is also a fully manual commercial steam wand. And because the machine has a large boiler, it provides greater pressure steam during milk frothing. 

Silvia’s steam wand also comes with unmatchable flexibility. It has a knob you can adjust to control water flow and pressure. 

THE WINNER
The Rancilio Silva is the winner, thanks to its flexible steam wand, which is great for making latte art.

Size & Capacity

Another major aspect of any coffee machine is its size and capacity. After all, you want to make sure you’re getting a device that can keep up with your coffee-drinking habits!

A water tank capacity is essential. So, the best espresso machine should have a large water tank for decreased refilling frequency.

Gaggia Classic Pro and Rancilio Silvia have large water tank capacities, but Classic Pro’s slightly bigger at 72 ounces. Rancilio Silvia only has 67 ounces. 

Now let’s talk about both machines’ weights and dimensions. And as mentioned above, Gaggia Classic Pro is smaller and weighs lighter than the Silvia. 

This matters when you have a small kitchen countertop space. If that’s the case, Gaggia Classic Pro is the better option.

Also, if you desire to take your espresso machine to various places, you would want to get the Classic Pro. It’s lighter, so it’s easier to bring anywhere. 

THE WINNER
Gaggia Classic Pro is the winner thanks to its lightweight size and travel-friendly dimensions.

Ease of Use

Both these espresso machines are easy to learn and use.

You’ll love the intuitiveness of the front panel operation on the Rancilio Silvia. You’ll see two small buttons on the machine’s power switch, indicating that the machine is switched on and heating up.

Three switches control the following:

  • Steam readiness
  • Control brewing
  • Steam output

The machine has a knob that controls the valve for the wand to produce hot water. 

Gaggia Classic Pro also competes with its intuitive operation as well. It also comes with three front switches for

  • Power control
  • Brewing
  • Steaming

This machine also has a side knob for steam and hot water regulation. You can see the tank’s water level in the front or from the top of the unit. And there’s an auto shut-off feature scheduled every twenty minutes of inactivity.

THE WINNER
The Gaggia Classic Pro ties with the Rancilio Silva for this round. 

The Verdict 

We’ve finally come to the final rundown of both espresso machines. And while both are promising in making delicious espresso at home, I declare Rancilio Silvia as the winner in this battle. 

Rancilio Silvia is everything you need in a semi-automatic espresso machine. Its stainless steel body makes it durable, while its flexible steam wand creates one of the most beautiful latte arts.

So, consider getting a Rancilio Silvia if:

  • You want to create unique latte art designs.
  • You want a durable espresso machine that can last for years.
  • You’re a beginner and want an easy-to-learn espresso maker. 

Pick up a Rancilio Silvia today if you’re all in it for a high-end espresso machine!

On the other hand, Gaggia Classic Pro is your best bet if:

  • You want a budget-friendly espresso machine. 
  • There’s little space on your kitchen countertop.
  • You prefer an on-the-go and lightweight machine. 

If practicality and budget are your preferred features, purchase a Gaggia Classic Pro today.

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Jessica Ruth Lee Fleming
Jessica is a seasoned caffeine-addict who spent 3 years behind the bar. Her early coffee days took her from the commercial Starbucks scene in urban DC all the way to helping launch a craft coffee shop in California. Today she prefers sharing her years of coffee capers through media, although you’ll find she does it with a trusty cup of coffee by her side.